Wednesday, November 14, 2001 Volume 67, Issue 60


The U.S. deserves a little respect

Matthew E. Caster

For two months now, I've tried to convey the splendor of this great country we live in. The sad truth is that some people don't quite agree with me.

I'm not talking about terrorists, who loathe everything that makes this country superb. I'm referring to ordinary people in other nations who hate everything America
stands for.

Take China, for example. reports the Chinese government is producing and distributing DVDs and videos of the World Trade Center collapse. Here's
a sample of the alleged commentary playing with these mortifying images:

"This is the America the whole world has wanted to see. Blood debts have been repaid in blood. Look at the panic in their faces as they wipe the dust off and crawl
out of their strong buildings now just a heap of rubble. We will never fear these people again. They have been shown to be soft-bellied paper tigers."

Reports out of China indicate that President Jiang Zemin is hooked on these videos, ordering his servants to "Play it again!"

And what about the images of Palestinians celebrating at the news of the attacks? Or Saudi claims that it was "American arrogance" that brought about this
disaster? If it's not obvious, let me spell it out: These people hate us, and nothing brings them more pleasure than watching us die en masse on television.

Now, for those of you who don't quite grasp the source of American pride, or think America is a nation rich with arrogance and nothing more, allow me to explain
why this is a great nation.

America is a great nation because an egotistical slob such as myself can criticize the government without retribution. It is a great nation because I can choose which
church I go to and who governs me. This is a great nation because my relatives have died to make it so. 

Look around Houston, with its pretty skyscrapers and indoor sports stadiums. For 165 years, our city has attracted many people with different backgrounds and
beliefs. Other cities have existed for millennia without obtaining the beauty and diversity of Houston.

China has killed millions for speaking out against the government and forces children to work in factories. Without our troops stationed in the region, Saudi Arabia
couldn't stop cub scouts from invading, let alone Saddam Hussein. 

Are these people forgetting that billions of arrogant American dollars are what allow them to keep their pathetic economies afloat? Do they forget that their children
come over here to get educated because they have no decent schools of their own?

We have a right to be arrogant, for we rise from tragedy stronger than ever before. That is what makes this a great nation. God bless America.

Caster, a junior chemical engineering major,
can be reached at

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